Caves, Cooking and Sticky Waterfalls
The Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park
Your guide and driver will meet you at the hotel at 0800 for your Caves, Cooking, and Sticky Waterfalls. We will drive to Chiang Dao. It is an agricultural area encircled by forested mountains. Many crops, such as corn, cassava, and rice, grow in this area. Many fruit trees include papaya, longan (lamyai), rose apple, and mango. The Palong grow pineapples as well. Today you will taste some of the fruit of the season. Yummy!
Our first stop today will be the Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park. During an excellent self-guided fun tour, you will see all the stages of the production of paper from elephant dung and learn about the history of papermaking. There are no elephants here, but it is fascinating and fun. The next stop is the charming local market at Mae Malai. Your guide will take you around and tell you about the herbs and vegetables used in Thai cooking. He will also talk about the strange kinds of food and the other local products you can find here. We buy some of the ingredients for our lunch here, which we will prepare in the village.
The Chiang Dao Cave Temple
The Chiang Dao Cave Temple is one of the most sacred places for Buddhists in North Thailand. We will visit the main cave and one of the more challenging caverns. Your guide will tell you about this limestone cave’s many myths and legends. Many interesting buildings, structures, and old Buddha images exist outside the cave. The Chiang Dao Cave Temple is a community-based tourism project: more than 70 local women work as guides in the cave on a rotational basis and support their families. We will continue our Caves, Cooking, and Sticky Waterfalls tour and drive to Mae Chon.
Cooking with the Palong people
At Mae Chon, we will be the guest of Lung Bun, a Dara-ang man who escaped Myanmar more than 40 years ago and settled here to raise his family. Most of the women still wear traditional dresses.
The Palong women are excellent weavers, and we invite you to try to weave traditionally. You can also try out the traditional rice pounder we installed at the house of Lung Bun. In the kitchen of Lung Bun, we will cook our lunch. Our guide is a master cook on a wood fire. You can help cut the vegetables and try your hand at cooking in a wok. After this, we will consume our delicious lunch.
After lunch, we will make a short and easy hike to Ban Huay Pong, Lahu village. We can also drive to this village if you don’t want to hike.
The amazing Sticky Waterfalls
After lunch, we will drive to The Buatong Waterfalls, aka the “Sticky Waterfalls.” The Sticky Waterfalls are in the Sri Lanna National Park. We are in an area with a lot of limestone mountains. Limestone is partially soluble and therefore forms many erosional landforms. Doi Luang Chiang Dao, the third-highest peak in Thailand (2175m), is a limestone mountain. Waterfalls are often slippery, but a limestone waterfall is not, hence the nickname “Sticky Waterfalls.” After a day full of activities, it is time for relaxation. We will spend an hour at these delightful falls, which you can walk up and do. Be careful, though. Enjoy the calm and clean water before we head back to Chiang Mai. We will arrive back in Chiang Mai in the late afternoon. We hope you enjoyed your Caves, Cooking, and Sticky Waterfalls tour.